For those of you who aren’t familiar with the environs of Singletrack Towers, we’re based in Todmorden. Todmorden is at the upper end of the Calder Valley and is…well…fairly normal. There are communal vegetable patches, and there’s a lucky dog in the park, but apart from that it’s quite a nice normal northern town. Further down the valley, where the mountain biking gets a touch steeper and more technical, there is Hebden Bridge, which is quite a different kettle of fish – or box of frogs, even.
Known for its liberal attitude to just about everything, Hebden Bridge has festivals for just about every interest and niche you could wish for, and now is the time of the Hebden Bridge Arts Festival. What does all this have to do with mountain biking? Well, next Sunday (1st July) there’s going to be a performance of a 12-hour-long piece of music called ‘Landscape‘ that includes playing ‘Aromatic Bicycle Music’ on your mountain bike, as well as a fleet of ice cream trucks, an opera singer on a hill, and a load of other bonkers stuff.
Local resident Paula Haworth is taking the opportunity to organise the mountain bike bit and kick off a planned year of activities to mark the 5th anniversary since her son completed a long and challenging course of treatment for Neuroblastoma, a rare form of childhood cancer. She’ll be doing some fundraising along the way, but as a keen rider she is also aiming to do a year of activities to encourage women to get out on their mountain bikes.
Paula is looking for women to join her on the 1st July to help with the performance of the music. All you need to be able to do is ride a bike and quirt a water pistol! Send her a message via Facebook if you’d like to join in, or be in the centre of town for 2.30pm to catch the bike bit of the performance.
If you’re interested in taking part in one of Paula’s rides – or if you’re a bike company with a demo fleet who’d like to support her – keep an eye on her Facebook page for further details or to get in touch. Or if you’d like to contribute to her fundraising efforts, her first challenge is going to be coast to coast in Wales.
If you’ve never been to Hebden Bridge, or never done the Classic Ride from Issue 104, maybe now would be a good time to fix that? With a heatwave forecast, the trails should be in tip top condition and there’ll be plenty to see and do once you’ve worn yourself out on a ride. Our Premier Dealer, Blazing Saddles, is there for all your last minute spares needs, route advice and free post ride bike wash (although there is a collection box inside for our local mountain rescue if you’re feeling so inclined).
Just don’t forget to ride responsibly, be nice, and say hi!